Investment Strategy
We seek to pick winning funds with superior management and quantitative characteristics linked to strong performance. Our quantitative research uses the most comprehensive mutual fund database in the world to determine the best strategies for long-term investing success. We then supplement those studies with extensive qualitative research of portfolio managers, analysts, and traders through onsite visits and follow-up phone calls.
 
About the Editor
Russel Kinnel is director of manager research for Morningstar, Inc. and editor of Morningstar FundInvestor, a monthly print newsletter for individual investors. He also writes the Fund Spy column for Morningstar.com, the company's investment Web site.

Since joining the company in 1994, Kinnel has covered the Fidelity, Janus, T. Rowe Price, and Vanguard mutual fund families. He helped develop the new Morningstar Rating for funds and the new Morningstar Style Box methodology. He also is co-author of the company's first book, The Morningstar Guide to Mutual Funds: 5-Star Strategies for Success, which was published in January 2003.

 
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About Russel Russ' Photo
Russel Kinnel,
Director of Manager Research and Editor, Morningstar FundInvestor
Russel Kinnel is director of manager research for Morningstar, Inc. and editor of Morningstar FundInvestor, a monthly print newsletter for individual investors.
Featured Posts
Are You Ready for Retirement?

Are You Ready for Retirement?
This week, Morningstar.com has focused on retirement readiness with a bunch of great articles and videos, including one from me in which I pick some good stock funds for retirement. You can find the whole thing right here: https://www.morningstar.com/articles/882470/morningstars-7-days-to-retirement-readiness.html

Invesco in Merger Talks
Ignites reports that Invesco is in talks to buy Oppenheimer Funds. The deal has not been announced yet.

It's too early to say what a deal might mean for shareholders of either shop. However, one potential positive for Oppenheimer equity fundholders would be that this could address key-person risk concerns. We like some of Oppenheimer's foreign equity funds, but they are generally by with a very small group of people, sometimes as small as two. Potentially, Invesco could step in should the need arise in the event of a manager retirement. But, again, it's very early here.

T. Rowe Price Real Estate Downgraded
We've downgraded T. Rowe Price Real Estate TRREX because of the impending retirement of David Lee. Here is David Kathman's explanation.

"The retirement of T. Rowe Price Real Estate's longtime manager is a significant blow, but the fund still has many positive features. We've downgraded its Morningstar Analyst Rating to Bronze from Gold.

"On Sept. 6, 2018, T. Rowe Price announced that David Lee, who has managed this fund since its 1997 inception, will retire at the end of 2018. That's an undeniable loss for shareholders, though far from a devastating one. Lee's replacement will be Nina Jones, who joined his team as an analyst for this fund in 2008 and took over T. Rowe Price Global Real Estate TRGRX from him in April 2015. She is very familiar with Lee's approach to real estate investing, which she doesn't plan to significantly change. The approach is disciplined and focuses on REITs with strong real estate features, especially location, and discounted valuations.

"The fund has achieved a strong and consistent record with Lee at the helm, ranking in the top 20% of the real estate Morningstar Category over his 21-year tenure. That record will no longer be directly relevant once Lee departs, though Jones will provide a fair amount of continuity. She had a strong record picking stocks while an analyst on this fund, though actually managing a mutual fund is a different matter, at which she will have to prove herself. T. Rowe Price Global Real Estate has struggled since she took it over, but that mainly owes to a REIT market unfavorable to her cautious, fundamentally driven approach, which has hurt this fund as well. In any case, T. Rowe Price Global Real Estate has only $150 million in assets, and this fund's much bigger $5 billion asset base provides another challenge.

"Despite the increased uncertainty brought on by Lee's retirement, the fund has enough pluses to keep its Analyst Rating at Bronze. In addition to the continuity in process, helped by Jones' long experience working with Lee, the fund's 0.73% expense ratio is the cheapest of any actively managed fund in the category, giving it a head start over its peers. T. Rowe remains an excellent, shareholder-friendly parent with deep resources."

 

 

 

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